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  #1  
Old 01-03-2009
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40th Birthday Cruise...

Hi All

I am a new member to this forum. A little about myself- I have been sailing since grade school, mostly daysailers and recently j-22s at a local club.

My wife just surprised me with a 4oth birthday present-- 8 days sailing in and around the Virgin Islands! We will be guests on a 50' ketch for a week, with the captain and his wife. We will meet the boat at Charlotte Amalie in St Thomas and can basically go anywhere we choose for the next 8 days. What are some fun sailing/water hole landmarks that we should visit? I have been to St John a couple of times, so I'm familiar with that island but I need some advice from you veterans on the rest of that area.

What do you think? Thank you in advance for your ideas!

Btw, we will leave Charlotte Amalie March 1st.

Cheers
JIM
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Old 01-03-2009
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Great gift idea.

Would the captain's name be Ron?

If you have never been to the British Virgin Islands I highly reccommend that entire area. There is something to see or do on almost every island. Jost Van Dyke, Norman Island and Virgin Gorda are not to be missed.

Welcome to Sailnet and have fun on your trip.

Last edited by FarCry; 01-03-2009 at 03:39 PM.
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Old 01-03-2009
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Valiente has a spectacular aura about Valiente has a spectacular aura about
If you are going shortly, my impression is that there is fairly decent wind in the early part of the year, so you might get some proper sailing in, especially on a ketch. If you try to work the boat as much as possible, you'll feel better about all the dinner and booze you take in at night...
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Old 01-03-2009
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Second the BVI's as the place to go: Tortola, Virgin Gorda etc. Make sure your passports are up to date.
Suggest you contact the charter captain as they will know what spots in the BVI's you can easily get to in a weeks charter. Have them make up a tentative itinerary for you that you can research and discuss.
Do you want to spend your nights anchored in relative seclusion or do you want to tie up near 'civilization' each night? A little of both?
Are you interested in scuba or snorkeling?
Preferred adult beverages?
It is probably a good idea to discuss your expectations with them so they will know what to expect and how to plan/provision for your trip.
Have a ball!
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Old 01-03-2009
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camaraderie is a jewel in the rough camaraderie is a jewel in the rough camaraderie is a jewel in the rough
I'm sure your captain will be able to tailor the cruise to the things you like best....snorking, good restaurants, isolated beaches, night life etc.
Everything is close enough to see in a week...but there is much more than a weeks worth of things to see and do! I second the notion that the BVI's have more to offer but the south shore of St. John is also one of our favorite places for pristine beaches and beauty.
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Old 01-04-2009
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Thanks all

I have been in touch with the captain a few times already. He came highly recommended. We have already discussed food, alchohol likes/dislikes etc. He knows the area well and has offered to make us an itinerary but is open to anything we would like to do.
I am looking forward to working this boat as much as he will let me. I have never spent any significant time on anything this size, I can't wait.
Good point Valiente, I do plan to work off the calories during the day because there will be lots of food and drinks for the evenings...

I'm typing this at work right now. Instead of being productive, I am exploring the BVI's with Google Earth...

Cheers
JIM
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Old 01-04-2009
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Who is the manufacturer of the boat you will be chartering?
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Old 01-04-2009
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It's a Morgan 49, I believe--
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Old 01-05-2009
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Valiente has a spectacular aura about Valiente has a spectacular aura about
Good choice if you aren't used to this size of boat. The Morgan 49 O/I is a big old tub that will handle the weather fine and take a while to wind up to hull speed (i.e. she won't likely get "away" from you). Big mainsail though: you'll enjoy jumping the halyard with all your weight. I'll bet she tracks well with a fingertip at the wheel, however.

I would let the skipper dock and moor, however...the "way on" with near 50,000 of boat (loaded with amenities, I would imagine!) can be extremely deceptive. Mine's 30,000 lbs., and coming from a 9,000 lb. boat only seven feet shorter, I had to relearn docking all over again.
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